From One DACAmented Dreamer to Another: We Will Not Go Down Without A Fight.
Our immigrant community has been under ferocious attack this past year. There have been moments of triumph but today, we again see a moment of struggle. Today the threat to end DACA, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, solidifies. President Trump said he would take care of this “with heart,” yet we see he has no heart. Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan told us to “rest easy,” and yet here we are, being called dreamers who don’t sleep. We do not rest on their morals, as we have seen time and time again that they are lacking.
My name is Ciriac Alvarez, and five years ago I obtained my first DACA workers permit. I have lived in the United States for over 17 years. I was told in high school that undocumented immigrants don’t go to college. Today, I am a proud graduate from the University of Utah. Like other Dreamers, I have purchased my first car and now work my first full-time job.
My DACA permit expires at the end of December, by that date things will be different.
There are moments that define us. This is one of those. I will tell you to find strength in the community who has come before us. The community who fought for DACA and fought to continue their lives even before DACA existed.
Your story now more than ever is important. Your voice now more than ever needs to be lifted. Your existence now more than ever needs to be reaffirmed.
- Today I declare again and again that we are here and Here To Stay.
- Today I declare that you are important with or without DACA.
- Today I declare that we are not alone in this fight.
No one can take away everything you accomplished with DACA. No one can take away the education you received or the strength you found. They may take away DACA, but they do not take away our hope, dignity, or willingness to fight for our existence.
Today I ask you not to stand down, we are 800,000 strong young immigrants who have shown that when given the opportunity we rise.
We carry the strength of our parents on our backs who risked everything for our dreams to come true. I carry my faith in the Lord that he will give us strength. We stand with our heads held high because DACA was fought by young unafraid undocumented immigrants.
From one DACAmented Dreamer to another, today we continue to face our greatest struggles and fears with courage the same way others have in the past.
Today is not the end.
I stand in solidarity with you. I fight to protect the rights of all undocumented immigrants alongside you. Today though, I also ask you to be kind to yourself. Take care of yourself and know that your feelings of disappointment, fear, and anger are met with validity. Your mental health and physical health are important above all else.
We rose to the occasion once, twice, and every day since this administration has threatened to end DACA. We rise to the occasion during every threat to our immigrant and refugee community.
We rise again today.
We rise again tomorrow.
We rise again together.
Today I ask you to join the movement if you can, in anyway you can. Either with a local organization or national organization. You can donate to organizations such as FWD.us, United We Dream, or America’s Voices. Or you can share your story, write an opinion piece in your local newspaper, talk to your friends and neighbors. If you’re in Utah, sign this petition asking AG Sean Reyes to support DACA.
Lastly, we must ask allies to show up. We must hold all of our elected officials accountable. We hold onto the hope that our parents brought us with. We ask them all to fight alongside us.
We are over 800,000 DACA benefieries. We are more than 11 million undocumented immigrants strong. DACA may end but our hopes, dreams, and resilience remain.
We will not go down without a fight.
Undocumented & Unafraid.